Yesterday’s annual general meeting of the BPI was notable for a two-pronged approach to the technology world: warmly embracing emerging startups while administering a verbal kicking to Google and other large tech firms.
So, you had BPI chairman Tony Wadsworth criticising the British government’s “love affair with big technology and big telecoms” and saying “The technology world has to also come to the party either willingly, or kicking and screaming”. Meanwhile, chief executive Geoff Taylor targeted “the practice of knowingly preferring illegal sites in search listings” and called for government legislation “if search engines will not find solutions on a voluntary basis”.
Labour’s shadow secretary for culture, media and sport, Harriet Harman, pressed all the right buttons for her audience too: “Google and other technology companies need to do more with the content creators to better signpost legitimate search and block illegal sites… This Government has dragged its feet unforgivably on implementing the Digital Economy Act. It’s standing up for the wrong people – for powerful interests and not hardworking musicians.”
Let’s see how that translates into manifesto commitments at the next election, eh? Much more positive was the fact that the BPI invited a group of music-tech startups to present at the AGM, with BandApp being voted as the best by the audience, with CueSongs a close second. Soshi Games, Motive Unknown, MusicQubed (see yesterday’s news) and Halocline also presented.